Deciphering Water, Stone, and Movement

Deciphering Water, Stone, and Movement

In 2017, Jorge welcomed me to the headquarters of Costa Rica’s underground water agency. His supervisor had asked him to show me “the model” at work. After many years of fieldwork on water issues, I had already been introduced to many models: the mathematical model to calculate extraction rates, two different pieces of software that model aquifer flow, the regulatory model Costa Rica’s agency follows, and sponges as a preferred … [more…]

The New “Water Barons”: Wall Street Mega-Banks are Buying up the World’s Water

The New “Water Barons”: Wall Street Mega-Banks are Buying up the World’s Water

This article was first published on December 21, 2012, by Market Oracle and Global Research

A disturbing trend in the water sector is accelerating worldwide. The new “water barons” — the Wall Street banks and elitist multibillionaires — are buying up water all over the world at unprecedented pace.

Familiar mega-banks and investing powerhouses such as Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan Chase, Citigroup, UBS, Deutsche Bank, Credit Suisse, Macquarie Bank, Barclays … [more…]

Sinking Lands, Damaged Infrastructure: Will Better Groundwater Management End Subsidence?

Sinking Lands, Damaged Infrastructure: Will Better Groundwater Management End Subsidence?

In the midst of the COVID-19 crisis, work continues on managing groundwater for long-term sustainability, as required by California’s landmark Sustainable Groundwater Management Act (SGMA). In January, water users in 21 critically overdrafted basins delivered their groundwater sustainability plans to the state Department of Water Resources. In this series , we examine the 36 plans submitted for 11 critically overdrafted basins in the San Joaquin Valley—California’s largest farming region, where … [more…]

It’s Time to Plan for Drier Western Rivers

It’s Time to Plan for Drier Western Rivers

Three recent studies highlight how climate change will jeopardize the water supply from Western rivers. The best antidote, researchers say, is to drastically reduce greenhouse gas emissions. | Illustration by Maddy Olson

A strange thing happens during particularly wet winters in California: farmers flood their fields. Never mind that crops are dormant and soil is already saturated — these farmers are more concerned about what lies beneath their land. Aquifers … [more…]

Wall Street spends millions to buy up Washington state water

Wall Street spends millions to buy up Washington state water

Photo: Don Lundgren’s family ranch sits next to the Chewuch River. Lundgren hoped to sell water rights to Crown Columbia for potential use beyond the Methow Valley, in the distance. (Steve Ringman / The Seattle Times)

WINTHROP, Okanogan County — Follow the water and you’ll find the money.

That’s how it often works in the dusty rural corners of Washington, where a Wall Street-backed firm is staking an ambitious venture … [more…]